WCOOP Event #25 PLO Rebuy live blog

Live blog coverage of WCOOP Event #25 $320 Pot-Limit Omaha with rebuys is brought to you by Stephen Bartley, Johnny Kampis, Jason Kirk, and Dave Behr.

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7:00am--TheNew eliminated in 2nd place; shaundeeb is the champion of Event #25!

TheNew put up a valiant struggle during heads-up play, but in the end he knuckled under to the unrelenting pressure of shaundeeb. The final hand was a big flop for both players, as it needed to be in order to end this tournament. The chips were all in the middle on a flop of Ks-7d-8s.  Deeb turned over 6s-7s-8d-9d for two pair with an open-ended straight draw and a small flush draw; TheNew showed Kc-Qs-Js-4c for top pair with a bigger flush draw. The fact that so many of his spades were dead certainly hurt his chances. The turn 3c was black, but not a spade. The river 5h filled Deeb's straight draw and eliminated TheNew.

TheNew earned $103,761 for a well-played tournament and hard-fought heads-up match. shaundeeb earned $144,112.50 and a WCOOP bracelet for an excellent tournament and ruthless domination of the final table.

6:53am--TheNew takes the chip lead! Then gives it back

shaundeeb moved in on the turn of a 4c-Jc-Td-7d board, looking to end his heads-up match with TheNew.  TheNew quickly called, tabling 8s-Js-2s-9c for a turned straight.  Deeb held Ah-Qd-5c-Jd and could win the match with a diamond on the river. He didn't get it when the river came 3s.  That pot gave TheNew the chip lead for the first time.

Just three hands later, shaundeeb came storming back with a double of his own.  Again he moved all in on the turn, with the board showing 6d 5c 6s Ac. He had made sixes full of aces; TheNew was drawing dead with 4c-7c-3s-5h.

After these hands, Deeb retained the chip lead, but the match is much closer now.  Deeb has 5.7 million to TheNew's 3.5 million.

6:51 am--TheNew chipping up

After taking down another pot, TheNew has cut Shaun Deeb's chip lead down to 2-to-1. All this just a few minutes after being all-in for his tournament life with a set of eights and having to dodge all the diamonds and fours in the deck. You've got to love PLO.

6:49am--History

Our two final players have a little history together, according to one of them:

TheNew: i think this is our 3rd time HU
shaundeeb: what was other 2 1k?
shaundeeb: and 100r?
TheNew: cant remember

Deeb almost finished TheNew off a minute ago, but he has since doubled twice to get things back to where they started.

6:44am--Break time

Level 29
Blinds 25,000/50,000
Average chip count: 4,683,000
Players remaining: 2
First prize: $144,112.50

Chip counts:

1. shaundeeb 7,808,620
2. TheNew 1,557,380

6:41am--shaundeeb freerolls MiniKipDK into oblivion

MiniKipDK has been eliminated by -- who else? -- shaundeeb. Each player contributed 120,000 chips to the pot preflop. The flop came down 9s-Ad-4c and brought heavy action. MiniKipDK bet first for 155,000. shaundeeb raised that to 388,888. MiniKipDK reraised al in and Deeb quickly called. MiniKipDK had As-9d-8h-6s for two pair, aces and nines. Deeb showed the same hand, Ah-Qs-9h-3c.  When the turn came Jh, Deeb was freerolling for the whole pot if he could hit a queen. Indeed he could! The river was the Qc, making a better two pair for Deeb. That river card eliminated MiniKipDk in third place.  Don't feel too bad for him; third place was worth $76,860.

With his elimination, shaundeeb and TheNew are heads-up for the title.  Deeb started heads-up play with a 3.5-to-1 chip advantage.

6:36am--Nice call

Facing a bet of 444,444 from shaundeeb on a board of 9h-6d-2h-Tc-6s with 1,142,220 in the pot, TheNew took his time before calling.

Dealer: TheNew, it's your turn. You have 15 seconds to act
Dealer: Player TheNew has requested TIME
TheNew: bluf
Dealer: shaundeeb has two pair, Queens and Sixes
Dealer: TheNew has three of a kind, Sixes
Dealer: Game #20498135571: TheNew wins pot (1586664) with three of a kind, Sixes
shaundeeb: you were the bluffer
TheNew: was
shaundeeb: once is always will be

6:35am--No slackening in sight

Eliminations are coming in bunches now. For once, a player other than shaundeeb did the heavy lifting.  Canuck raised from the small blind to 120,000 and was called by TheNew. The flop came 2c-Ah-Ts and brought a 120,000-chip bet from Canuck that TheNew called.

On the turn 3s, Canuck checked, then called all in for 330,262 after TheNew bet 480,000. TheNew had made two pair, tens and threes, with the turn card and was ahead of Canuck's Ac-Ks-Jd-5d.  The 8d missed both players, resulting in another elimination.  Canuck finished in 4th place and earned $57,645.

6:30am--shaundeeb on a rampage, kAmIkAdZeEe out in 5th

Shaun Deeb can't be stopped right now. He just took out the perpetually disconnected kAmIkAdZeEe with Tc-8d-6c-5s against Ah-Qd-8h-7c when the board came Kd-Th-4d-2d-Ks. kAmIkAdZeEe finishes with $40,351,50 for his efforts.

6:27am--shaundeeb is an avalanche, obliterating all in his path

Another heads-up flop meant another elimination at the hands of shaundeeb.  He reraised to 200,000 after Miraclos raised all in for 118,810. Canuck also called to try to double-team Miraclos. Deeb bet 538,810on the 6c-3d-8s flop, folding Canuck. He showed Kd-Tc-7h-5d for the open-ended straight draw against Miraclos' ace-high, Ac-Qs-Jc-Ts.  Miraclos never hit, but shaundeeb did, turning his straight with the 4d.  The river was a meaningless 5s.

For his efforts in this tournament and his sixth-place finish, Miraclos earned $32,665.50. Deeb now has a commaning chip lead and stranglehold on the final table.

6:24am--Two in a row for shaundeeb

Barely had ely_cash41's virtual chair been removed from the virtual table, then shaundeeb was back at it with caprioli.  Deeb raised to  88,888 from early position, then called caprioli's all-in bet of 325375.  Deeb showed Ad-Js-4h-5s and promptly flopped a straight on the 6c-3d-2h board.  caprioli was rollling with double-suited kings, Ks-2s-Kd-9d, but was drawing dead after the turn came Tc.  5c completed the board.

caprioli's 7th-place finish earned him $24,979.50.

6:22am--Playing it safe, then no more play

ely_cash41 opened under the gun for 120,000 and the action folded around to Canuck, who reraised to 380,000. That got a reaction from ely_cash41:

ely_cash41: ;lskdjf;lksdjf;lksjdf;lkasjd;flksad
ely_cash41: f me
ely_cash41: im still gonna get 8th
shaundeeb: lol
ely_cash41: nope
ely_cash41: i aint doing
ely_cash41: it
ely_cash41: aa naked layed down

On the very next hand, ely_cash41 would find his way out in 8th place in particularly nasty fashion.

ely_cash41: As-7d-5c-3s
shaundeeb: Ad-Qd-9s-6d

The flop came Ah-Ks-7s, pretty much a dream for ely_cash41, but the turn and river were the 6h and 6c, giving Shaun Deeb the full house and sending ely_cash41 to bed with $17,293.50 more in his account.

6:15am--ely_cash41 can't catch a break

ely_cash41 has been complaining during the final table that he simply can't beat aces at all during this tournament. He got in a raising war with TheNew that ended with TheNew all in.  ely_cash41 held double-suited aces with Ah-Qh-Ac-7c, while TheNew showed Ks-Kd-Jh-9d.  It was a huge flop, Qd-Td-Qs, making trip queens for ely_cash41 and bringing a sickening draw for TheNew.  He hit his draw on the turn with the Js; ely_cash41 did not fill up on the 9c river. TheNew moved to over 1.3 million in chips while ely_cash41 fell to 200,000.

He doubled shortly hereafter through Canuck and now sits behind about 400,000 chips.

6:15am--Blinds go up

We've umped another level, this time to blinds of 20,000/40,000.

6:12am--Another double for kAmIkAdZeEe

Our man hasn't disconnected in a while, and he's managed to double up once again. This time he held Ac-Ad-Ah-3h against ely_cash41's Kc-Kd-Jc-Jd and managed to flop the case ace. That set held up to give him 503k, while ely_cash41 dropped to 708k.

6:11am--Josephy is the first to go

We finally had our first elimination from the final table. shaundeeb made a small raise from under the gun. Action folded to Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy in the small blind, who shoved for about 91,000.  shaundeeb made the call with Jd-7d-Tc-2c and hit the flop in a huge way, 8s-Ad-9d. Josephy was still ahead with Js-Jh-3c-3c but was outdrawn by the Th on the turn that made a straight for shaundeeb.  The river 9s completed the board and sent Josephy to bed in 9th place. He won $10,837.26 in prize money.

6:06am--Josephy's shove backfires

Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy is the new short stack.  He pushed all-in for 680,000 after Canuck opened for 255,000 on a raised flop of 8c-Ah-5c. Canuck snap-called all in for about 150,000 less, tabling top set with Ac-As-Kc-6d.  Josephy held 7c-9s-9c-Ts for a flush draw and a gutshot straight draw.  Neither came in; in fact, Canuck made a full house on the turn with 8s. He now has 1.3 million in chips.

6:04am--Cross your fingers

kAmIkAdZeEe has managed to stay connected for the last ten or fifteen minutes. Could it be his connectivity issues have been resolved?  Let's hope so. Nobody -- not the players, not the tournament staff and certainly not the media -- wants this tournament to go longer than it needs to go.

5:59am--You can't kill him, you can only hope he stays connected

kAmIkAdZeEe refuses to die. He just doubled up again, this time with Kc-Ks-Qd-4s against TheNew's Ac-Jc-Jd-8s. The flop of 8c-7c-5d gave TheNew some hope, but the board ran out 5h-Kh to give kAmIkAdZeEe the full house and boost his stack to 326k.

5:53am--kAmIkAdZeEe hangs around

Left with 127,944 chips after the blinds passed, kAmIkAdZeEe stuck 105,000 in preflop. His disconnect issues have not amused the other players.  ely_cash41 said, "spiteaments" and put kAmIkAdZeEe all in.  He called, bringing a plea of "1xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx" from Cliff Josephy. It didn't happen.  kAmIkAdZeEe rivered a pair of queens with Ad-8h-s-Qh to overtake el_cash51's flopped pair of jacks with 4s-Jc-5h-6s.  He doubled up, to about 270,000.

5:48 am--The ball gets rolling

After keeping his tablemates waiting, kAmIkAdZeEe reconnected long enough to play a hand, and it cost him nearly 500k. MiniKipDK hit a full house on the river when the Qs matched up with his Kd-Qd-Qc-Jc, grabbing the 1,078,670 pot and dropping the disconnecting player to just a tad over 200k.

5:41am--The natives are restless

kAmIkAdZeEe is continuing to have disconnect issues, and it is driving the other players at the table crazy.  Some samples of the table chat:

ely_cash41: kami might get a spite call before the night is over

ely_cash41: damn def getting some spite calls now
ely_cash41: i might even float with trips in my hand

ely_cash41: this is worse then watching celebrity poker

JohnnyBax: This is worse than playing against John Phan

Miraclos: cant somebody do something about this bs?
Miraclos: i mean...gaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhh
JohnnyBax: Maybe Annie Duke can
Miraclos: lol

5:30 am--Break time

Level 27
Blinds 15,000 / 30,000
Average chip count: 1,040,666
Players remaining: 9
First prize: $144,112.50

Chip counts:

1. shaundeeb 2,168,477
2. ely_cash41 1,925,522
3. MiniKipDK 1,522,832
4. TheNew 1,436,061
5. kAmIkAdZeEe 700,834
6. JohnnyBax 515,570
7. Canuck 460,702
8. Miraclos 387,737
9. caprioli 248,265

5:27am--Start by asking for the world, then negotiate down from there

There's been some discussion at the table, led by Cliff Josephy and Shaun Deeb, about getting an extended break at the next break.  Josephy asked for thirty minutes; the tournament host said that if all players agreed, he would make the next break thirty minutes.

That prompted Shaun Deeb to ask what the longest possible break would be.  When the host asked what Deeb had in mind, he replied ten hours! He apparently is scheduled to travel to London (presumably for the WSOP Europe) and would rather finish playing the "flipaments" from there.

Some players are also concerned that kAmIkAdZeEe has been having repeated internet issues, slowing the final table down, and would like a thirty-minute break to allow him to try to resolve them.

The host said if all players agreed to a longer break, he would look into its feasibility on his side.  They couldn't even agree on thirty minutes, never mind ten hours.  As a result the next scheduled break is for its published length of five minutes.

5:19am--Jenka is the final table bubble-boy

The mantle of "Short Stack" was being traded around Table 26. Jenka was the one standing when the music stopped. He called all in for about 200,000 after shaundeeb raise to 45,678 and ely_cash41 raised to 202,172.  shaundeeb also called the raise.

The flop came 6d-Js-8s, bringing a bet of 625,716 from Deeb.  That folded ely_cash41 to leave Deeb heads-up with Jenka:

Jenka: 6c-5s-8d-7s
shaundeeb: 8h-5h-9s-Ts

Both players had similar hands, but Deeb had the better draw.  The board bricked Ah Jh to allow Deeb to take it down with two pair, jacks and eight with a ten kicker. Jenka finished in 10th place, winning $8,070.30 as a result.

5:18 am--Ladies and gentlemen, your final table

WCOOP Event 25 final table.jpg

5:11am--Two doubles for Bax

Hold the phone; rumors of Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy's demise were greatly exaggerated. He doubled up twice to 611,000 in chips. The second double-up was all in preflop against Canuck. Josephy held Ks-Qc-Ts-2c to Canuck's As-Kc-9c-7s. Both of his flush draws were counerfeited, but he managed to make two pair and the winner with Jd-5d-Qd-6c-6d. That was a winner. Canuck is the new short stack, with less than 200,000 remaining chips.

5:09 am--Connection problems

kAmIkAdZeEe is driving the rest of the remaining players bonkers right now - he's disconnected again, and PokerStars rules allow him 240 seconds to reconnect every time he loses his signal. He didn't come back within his allotted four minutes this time, but his hand won a 50k pot at showdown. He appears to be firmly reconnected, though, and his tablemates are certainly hoping he stays that way.

5:03 am--Good timing

kAmIkAdZeEe found himself disconnected at an inopportune time, holding Kc-Qh-Js-6c on a flop of As-Tc-9c. For three and a half minutes his table waited for him to come back, but there was no sign of life. Just as his time was about to expire, he popped back in and bet 130,000, only to have TheNew check-raise all-in. He immediately called and TheNew showed he had flopped a set of tens and had a straight draw with Qd-Jd-Td-Th. The 4c on the river gave kAmIkAdZeEe the flush and doubled him up to 650k.

5:01am--Pwnasaurus pwned by ely_cash41

Pwnasaurus is the 11th-place finisher in today's event.  Short-stacked for what seemed like over an hour, he raised all in to about 170,000 after ely_cash41 made it 60,000 to go and Canuck called.  Both players called Pwnasaurus' bet, then checked the 6s-7d-6h flop.  When the turn came 4c, ely_cash41 bet 160,000, folding Canuck.  He opened Ad-5c-Kh-8c for an eight-high straight.  Pwnasaurus had 4d-Ks-As-8d and collected $8,070.30 when he missed the river, 8h.

4:55am--shaundeeb back on top

Action is getting a little crazy at Table 26. shaundeeb is back in the pole position after betting 240,000 on the turn of a 5d-3h-Kd-8h board. ely_cash41 raised to over 1 million, putting Deeb all in. He quickly called with Kh-Th-Jd-8d, top two pair with a double flush draw.  ely_cash41 showed As-Qh-9h-3s and hit two pair with a river Qd, but it was no good against Deeb's flush.  Deeb once again has over 2 million in chips.

4:51am--Bax takes a big hit

Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy is rocking the short stack after a big confrontation with ely_cash41, the player who just a few hands ago needed to river a two-outer to stay in the tournament. ely_cash41 made it 60,000 to go preflop from the button, and only Josephy called out of the big blind.

Both players checked the As-Kh-9s flop. On the turn 8c, Josephy bet 80,000 and was called. When the river came 7h, he quickly checked.  ely_cash41 bet 225,000, putting Josephy to the test. Josephy decided to look him up, and mucked when he saw a jack-high straight, Jd-Tc-9c-7s.

4:50 am--Blinds go up

We've reached Level 26, which means it's time for the blinds to go up to 10,000/20,000. Let's see if we can get this game out of the mud.

4:45 am--Tense times at Table 85

The action on Table 85 has been almost nonexistent since ElkY's elimination. Only four of the last 28 pots have been worth over 100k, and none of them have significantly changed the leaderboard. Nobody is willing to be the one who makes a mistake at this point.

4:42am--Cards turn against shaundeeb

shaundeeb got another opponent all in, but couldn't finish off the elimination. He flopped a huge draw with Tc-6s-Jc-9h on a flop of Ac-8c-Qh against Canuck, who showed Kc-Ks-Jh-Ts, but couldn'thit his outs with the 6h turn or 4h river. Canuck doubled to 930,000 to stay alive.

4:38am--Pretty sick, vol. 2

A 1.1-million chip has been shipped to ely_cash41, but not without some drama.  He reraised shaundeeb from 38,000 to 122,000 preflop.  Deeb didn't blink, putting in the third raise to 374,000. ely_cash41 moved all in for a total of 547,049. The call was 173,049 to Deeb and getting such a good price, he couldn't resist putting them in.

ely_cash41: Ad-As-3d-4s
shaundeeb: 3c-Jc-3s-Jh

Deeb hit a great flop, catching the case three to make a set, 3h-5h-9c.  No help for ely_cash41 on the turn 8s, but the ace on the river saved ely_cash41 by making him a bigger set than Deeb held.

ely_cash41: oh my god
ely_cash41: that was amazing
ely_cash41: bbbbb33 is so fricking pissed right now if hes watching

Deeb later doubled up Canuck to slip back to 1.1 million in chips. ely_cash41 is just under 1 million.

4:31am--Pretty sick

shaundeeb raised to 38,000 preflop yet again, and the short-stacked Canuck called out of the big blind. He bet 84,000 on a flop of 2c-3s-Tc. shaundeeb raised him all in and Canuck quickly called.

Canuck: 5d-Ac-4c-Th
shaundeeb: 5c-Qd-4d-Ad

Predictably, shaundeeb was not happy to see Canuck's hand.

shaundeeb: fsdf
shaundeeb: fds

But the turn and the river bailed shaundeeb out, coming 7d 6s to make a seven-high straight for both players. It was a chopped pot that resulted in some amusing table chatter.

shaundeeb: good riv
ely_cash41: lol
ely_cash41: thats pretty sick
JohnnyBax: ladies and gentlemen...........
Dealer: shaundeeb, it's your turn. You have 15 seconds to act
JohnnyBax: Shaun F Deeb!
shaundeeb: Shaun F DEEB

Deeb still leads the tournament, and Canuck will stick around for a few more hands.

4:26 am--The end of ElkY in this tourney

With his short stack whittling away, it was only a matter of time before ElkY ended up all in. He chose to wait until Miraclos opened the pot to shove his 92,400 in the middle and hope for the best. Miraclos flopped a set of kings, though, and ElkY's Th-9c-7h-6d couldn't hit anything better than two pair. That sent him to the rail in 12th place, earning him $8,070.30.

4:25am--First to two million

shaundeeb is the first player in today's tournament to reach two million chips. There's no prize for that, but it does make him the far and away chip leader. Now let's see if he can put those chips to good use.

4:21am--tyr55's unimproved aces spell D-O-O-M

tyr55 started a hand against shaundeeb with 458,000 in chips and finished it in on the rail. Deeb raised to 38,000 from early position and got only one caller -- tyr55 in the small blind. On a flop of Kh-5c-Js, tyr55 checked to Deeb, who bet out 56,850. tyr55 quickly check-raised to 262,550, leaving himself only 157,450 behind. Those chips wound up in the middle when Deeb reraised pot. Once the smoke cleared, the cards were shown:

tyr55: Ac-Ad-Jh-7s
shaundeeb: Ks-Kd-3c-Jd

Deeb flopped top set and had tyr55 virtually drawing dead. The turn and river were both bricks, 4c and Tc, to eliminate tyr55 in 13th place.

4:04 am--We've reached the second fifteen-minute break

Level 25
Blinds 8,000 / 16,000
Average chip count: 720,461
Players remaining: 13
First prize: $144,112.50

Chip counts:

1. shaundeeb 1,509,886
2. JohnnyBax 1,408,828
3. MiniKipDK 1,299,832
4. TheNew 1,153,812
5. ely_cash41 931,195
6. caprioli 608,353
7. Miraclos 501,337
8. tyr55 458,000
9. Jenka 395,146
10. kAmIkAdZeEe 314,329
11. Pwnasaurus 312,112
12. Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier 281,066
13. Canuck 192,104

4:01 am--Slowdown

Play on Table 85 has turned to the same sort of jockeying for position that we saw on Table 26 a little while ago. That makes sense, given that the bottom seven spots of the 13 remaining are all bunched very closely together and that the next three players out miss out on the final table pay jump.

3:54am--tyr55 doubles up

tyr55 picked a great time to shove over the top of ely_cash41. The all-in bet was 126,000 and ely_cash41, who had raised first to 36,000, quickly called. Both players showed an ace, a five and a seven, but tyr55 had a queen while ely_cash41 showed a three. The board ran out 2h-8d-6d-Js-Kh to allow tyr55 to win the pot and double up to 270,000.

3:47am--Players jockeying for position

The action has ground to a halt on Table 26. Eventually the blinds will catch up to the stacks, but that won't happen any time soon. As a result, the players are seemingly content to jockey for chip position by taking down pots with a raise or reraise preflop.

3:43 am--Right back in it

ElkY just got his even bigger break and is now back to 555k.

He opened for 26,666 and got calls from kAmIkAdZeEe on the button and TheNew in the big blind. When the flop came Jc-9c-4h, TheNew checked and ElkY bet pot for just under 86k. kAmIkAdZeE called but TheNew folded. On the turn ElkY shoved for his last 148k and got the call.

ElkY: As-Tc-8c-4s
kAmIkAdZeEe: Jd-9s-8h-5s

The turn was a brick with the 3d, but the river gave ElkY the check mark when the Qs fell to make his straight.

3:39 am--Major break for ElkY

ElkY just caught his major break, flopping a set of tens against Miraclos' A-A-x-x. Now he needs his even bigger break, because he still only has 280k.

3:38 am--ElkY in trouble

After making substantial preflop calls only to fold on the flop twice, ElkY is hurting with just 130k in his stack. It's going to take a major break for him to hang on, and an even bigger break for him to make a run.

3:33 am--Blind rise again

It's time to play a little higher, with blinds of 6,000/12,000.

3:32 am--TheNew busts another

rujobo found himself down to just 89k and called 30k after Miraclos raised and ElkY called. TheNew came along from the big blind and saw a flop of Qs-Js-4c. TheNew led out for 67,000, and his only caller was the all-in rujobo. TheNew had flopped top two pair against rujobo's pair of fours and gutshot straight draw, and the two pair held to send rujobo to the rail in 14th place.

3:28am--Playing the role of executioner, shaundeeb

There's a new millionaire in Event #25 named shaundeeb. Deeb, along with tyr55, called a raise to 30,000 made by YRWTHMELTHR. The flop came 4s-2d-3c and brought a continuation bet of 70,000 from YRWTHMELTHR. shaundeeb raised to 175,000, folding tyr55 and sending YRWTHMELTHR deep into the tank for over a minute. YRWTHMELTHR finally raised all in to 504,317 and it appeared shaundeeb had ticked the "call any bet" box, given how fast he called the raise.

YRWTHMELTHR: Ac-Ah-3h-5h
shaundeeb: Td-8h-6d-5c

Both players had flopped a straight, but shaundeeb's straight was the nut straight. The board paired running nines to send YRWTHMELTHR to the rail, stunned. He finished in 15th place, earning $6,533.10.

3:27 am--ElkY hurting

The pots are mostly staying small on ElkY's table, but the Team PokerStars Pro just broke that pattern in a hand with MiniKipDK. Unfortunately, he couldn't take the 235k pot down, folding to a pressure bet from his opponent on the turn.

On the very next hand, ElkY picked up As-Ac-5c-3h in a blind-vs.-blind hand with kAmIkAdZeEe. He flopped a set but was outdrawn by his opponent's Kc-Js-Th-8c. Luckily he never had to make a big decision, as the Kh put a possible flush out and slowed kAmIkAdZeEe down enough to have him just call ElkY's 60k bet on the end.

ElkY is now down to 265k.

3:15am--Chip leaders play it cautiously

ely_cash41 and Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy are the only players who have more than 1,000,000 in chips. They're both on Table 26 and have been stepping wary circles around each other. The two tok a raised flop of Td-Th-3c along with Jenka. All three checked to the turn 6h, where ely_cash41 bet 45,500 and only Josephy called. Now heads up, the two chip leaders checked through the river Jc. ely_cash41 showed first, showing Kh-4s-5h-Js for two pair, jacks and tens. That was a winner.

3:10 am--More action, down to 15

omalos opened the pot for 28,000 preflop from the cutoff and got a call from caprioli on the button. TheNew then reraised to 122,000, a bet which only omalos called, leaving himself another 218k behind. TheNew bet pot on the Qc-3h-2s flop and omalos called all in.

TheNew: Th-7s-6d-5h
omalos: Qh-Jd-9s-8d

omalos was ahead until the board ran out 6c-5d, giving TheNew two pair, sixes and fives. That bad break sent omalos out in 16th place and boosted TheNew to 920k.

3:06 am--Miraclos on 4th street

After a wealth of hands lacking in action, we got a bang just a moment ago.

MiniKipDK opened for 25,000 in the hujack and justjoo raised to 90,000 in the cutoff, leaving himself just 18k behind. Miraclos then raised to 310,000 on the button, clearing the field, and justjoo called all-in.

Miraclos: Ah-As-Ts-6d
justjoo: Jh-9c-8c-7s

The flop came down Qs-Js-7d, putting justjoo out front with two pair, but the turn was the 6s to give Miraclos the nut flush. He dodged a full house on the river and justjoo was out in 17th place. Miraclos climbed to 537,717 with that pot.

3:05am--kwob20 eliminated in 18th place

kwob20 lasted exactly one hand after the break. After Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy made it 30,000 to go, kwob20 reraised to 90,000, leaving just 25,000 behind. It was go time when Josehy reraised to 150,000. kwob20 showed Ad-Qc-8d-4h, which completely missed a board of 3s-Jh-Jd-3h-Js. Josephy showed Ah-Kd-Kh-6s to win the pot witht jacks full of kings and send kwob20 to the virtual rail in 18th place. kwob20 earned $4,995.90 as a result.

2:58am--Chip counts at the break

Level 23
Blinds 5,000 / 10,000
Average chip count: 520,333
Players remaining: 18
First prize: $144,112.50

Top ten players:

1. JohnnyBax 1,263,532
2. ely_cash41 1,150,073
3. MiniKipDK 1,016,209
4. Jneka 622,024
5. Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier 586,522
6. shaundeeb 570,157
7. TheNew 551,134
8. caprioli 527,353
9. YRWTHMELTHR 481,817
10. Miraclos 419,280

2:48am--Deeb's flush the boss hand

shaundeeb is back to an average stack after taking down a 300,000-chip pot from Jenka. Deeb raised preflop to 18,500, finding two callers in Jenka and Canuck. On a flop of 2c-8c-5c, Deeb made a continuation bet of 35,000 that Jenka called. Both players checked the 8s turn. On the river Jc, Deeb checked to Jenka, who bet 90,500. It took Deeb about twenty seconds before he called with Kc-8d-7d-4c for a king-high flush. Jenka showed Ac-Ks-Js-Th for two pair.

With that pot, Deeb moved to over 610,000 in chips.

2:39am--Down to two tables, and look who's still here

We haven't mentioned Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier's name in a while, but he's still hanging around. ElkY, who is having an absolutely fantastic WCOOP series, has 593,000 chips, who is just slightly above par. After taking down a large pot about twenty minutes ago, he has been slowly chipping up one small pot at a time. Don't discount ElkY any time soon.

2:38 am--Man down!

We're down to two tables now thanks to the elimination of yucca 48. The action started with Jenka limping under the gun; kAmIkAdZeEe (cutoff), YRWTHMELTHR (small blind), and yucca 48 (big blind) all came along and saw a flop of Ad-9h-8h. The blinds checked and Jenka bet 24,000, which kAmIkAdZeEe called. yucca 48 then check-raised to 128,000, folding Jenka but getting a shove from kAmIkAdZeEe. Covered by just 23k, yucca 48 made the call.

yucca 48: Ts-7h-6d-5h
kAmIkAdZeEe: As-Tc-8s-7s

yucca 48 had a lot of outs to either win or chop, but none of them came home and he was out in 19th place. kAmIkAdZeEe, meanwhile, jumped up to 456k.

2:32 am--The Jenka show

Jenka has taken control on Table 8, claiming two pots in a row worth a combined total of 234,000. Both wins came on the river; in the first he took the pot without a showdown, but in the second his 6c-5s-4c-3h was good for the straight on a board of Tc-9s-2c-6d-3s. He's now up to 738,024.

2:27 am--Blinds go up

We're now playing just a little higher, with blinds at 4,000/8,000.

2:25am--ely_cash41 builds a bigger house

A three-way raised pot between ely_cash41, MENTOR 2 and Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy ended in tournament-ending disaster for MENTOR 2. The flop was As-9h-3c and brought a bet of 42,000 from MENTOR 2. ely_cash41 called that bet, then called 84,000 on the 3d turn. The rest of MENTOR 2's chips, 134,440 in total, went in on the river. ely_cash41 snap-called with 9d-9c-8c-6s for a full house, nines full of threes. MENTOR 2 also had a full house, but it was threes full of aces with Ah-Jc-Js-3h. He's out of the tournament in 20th place.

2:22am--riverloser can't dodge bullets

Short on chips, kings must have looked pretty good to Riverloser, good enough to reraise tyr55 all in to almost 55,000 chips. It was bad luck for Riverloser, as tyr55 called with aces:

Riverloser: Kh-Kc-6h-Th
tyr55: Ah-Ac-7d-3h

tyr55 flopped an ace to make a set of aces, which held up through the river. tyr55 eliminated Riverloser in 21st place, an elimination worth $3,458.70 to Riverloser.

2:12am--tiffaniejoy is the latest casualty

170,000 chips evaporate quickly. tiffaniejoy called a raise by MiniKipDK to 16,000. On a flop of Qd-3s-Th, she bet 51,000. MiniKipDK raised enough to put tiffaniejoy all in, and she made the call.

MiniKipDK: Ks-Jd-Kd-8c
tiffaniejoy: Qc-Js-Td-Jh

The 7h on the turn and the Ah on the river made MiniKipDK the winner with a Broadway straight. tiffaniejoy was eliminated in 22nd place.

2:06am--astarisborn dies

astarisborn has been short on chips for over an hour. He finally made his stand with Qc-Jh-3h-Tc and was called by rujobo and Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier. When the flop came down Js-Kc-4h, ElkY check-folded to rujobo's bet of 42,000. From there the board ran out 6s-2s. rujobo's Ah-Kd-Qd-Th was the winner with a pair of kings. astarisborn finished in 24th place, earning $3,458.70.

1:59am--Third in a row for ely_cash41 sends J-C AA to the rail

With a total of 200,000 chips to start the hand, J-C AA was put to a decision when ely_cash41 reraised him from 21,000 to 66,000. After some thought, he reraised all in. ely_cash41 snap-called with Ah-Ad-2d-Ks and was well ahead of J-C AA's 5d-Kd-Kh-5s. Neither player improved by the river; ely_cash41's aces were the winning hand. For his 25th place finish, J-C AA received $3,458.70.

1:57 am--Slow going on Table 8

Since we returned from the break we've only seen one pot of much significance on Table 8 - and that was the last one, worth 114k for Jenka with a bet on the turn. All the other pots have been taken down preflop as our players try to pick the best possible spots to invest their chips.


1:47am--Break time again

Level 21
Blinds 3,000 / 6,000
Average chip count: 374,640
Players remaining: 25
First prize: $144,112.50

Top ten players:

1. JohnnyBax 802,732
2. Pwnasaurus 742,892
3. omalos 680,049
4. caprioli 674,906
5. MiniKipDK 633,658
6. YRWTHMELTHR 618,238
7. Jenka 469,024
8. justjoo 462,937
9. Canuck 354,529
10. TheNew 348,458

Remaining Team PokerStars Pros:

Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier 334,615 (14th)

1:37 am--floes flushed by Josephy's full house

The tournament is over for floes. He called all in for 105,000 chips total on a flop of 6s-7d-Jd. His opponent was Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy, who flopped a set of sevens with Qh-Jh-7c-7s. floes showed the nut flush draw, Ad-Kd-Qd-4s and picked up a Broadway straight draw when the turn came Qs. The river 6d made a flush for floes, but it also filled Josephy's full house. floes goes to bed in 26th place, earning $3,458.70.

1:34 am--Three tables and dropping

We're now down to three tables thanks to the elimination of Svend svaerd in 28th place. He held Td-8s-7d-5h on a board of 8d-6d-2s and raised all-in over YRWTHMELTHR's pot bet of 86,994. He got a call and found himself hoping to catch either a straight or a straight flush, as YRWTHMELTHR held As-Ad-Th-3d for a pair of aces with the nut flush draw. The board ran out Ac-Ts and sent Svend svaerd to the rail, closing out Table 29.

1:31 am--Josephy feeling better

After folding the nuts preflop a few minutes ago, Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy made up for it. Josephy reraised Canuck from 17,500 to 60,000 preflop. Canuck called and checked a flop of 5c-7d-4h. He then called a bet of 50,000 from Josephy. It was second verse, same as the first on the Ks turn, but when the river fell 8h, Canuck led out with a bet of his own for 50,000. Josephy called, showing down 8c-7h-6h-4s for a straight. Canuck had only a pair of aces, As-Ac-9c-2c. The 427,500-chip pot was all Josephy's and pushed him into the chip lead with more than 700,000 chips.

1:26 am--Deeb climbing

Shaun Deeb just claimed a 309k pot against zangbezan24 when he flopped top and bottom pair against zangbezan24's unimproved pair of jacks. That sent his opponent to the rail in 29th place and boosted Deeb to just over 350k.

1:23 am--English only, please

Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy was squeezed out of a pot after calling a raise to 14,500 and wasn't happy about it. The big blind, Pokerro, reraised all in to 45,248, allowing the original raiser, tyr5, to three-bet to 167,244. After the board ran out Qh-4c-Ad-Qd-Ks and tyr55 won with a Broadway straight, Josephy typed the following into the chat box:

JohnnyBax: ASDFG;ASDLFASDF;SDFLASDFASD

We doubt he was testing his keyboard.

1:21 am--Pwnasaurus pwning

After his big pot against MarySmythe, Pwnasaurus claimed another big pot to jump over 650k a few minutes ago. He min-raised to 10,000 and then called when Zanjong raised to 37,500. When the flop came down Ts-8d-4d he put his opponent all-in for his last 40,008.

Pwnasaurus: Ad-Jh-8h-6d
Zanjong: Qc-Jc-9h-4h

The board ran out 8c-6s, giving Pwnasaurus a boat and sending Zanjong to the rail in 32nd place.

1:15 am--NoraFlum crippled

A 500,000-chip pot on Table 85 was shipped to omalos at the expense of NoraFlum. The two players got all of their chips in the middle on a flop of Ad-2s-5d. NoraFlum flopped top set, As-Ac-Jd-2h, but omalos had flopped a whel with Ts-Th-4h-3s. NoraFlum needed, but didn't get, a board pair and was left with less than 50,000 chips after the pot went to omalos. omalos joined an exclusive group of five players at the top of the chip counts with more than 500,000 in chips.

1:14 am--MarySmythe falls short

After a fortunate catch earlier against rujobo, MarySmythe couldn't summon another.

J-C AA opened for 15,525 in middle position and got calls from caprioli in the hijack and ely_cash41 on the button. Pwnasaurus potted it for 82,625 in the small blind and MarySmythe shipped it for 194,298. Everyone folded except for Pwnasaurus, who was happy to call:

Pwnasaurus: Ac-Ah-Jh-4s
MarySmythe: Kd-Kc-Ts-9c

The board never came close to helping MarySmythe, sending her to the rail in 33rd place.

1:12 am--Josephy eclipses 500,000

Table 26 is starting to turn into the JohnnyBax show. Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy has won several pots in succession without a showdown to climb to more than 500,000 chips for the first time in this event. He was helped in his effort by a hand in which he relieved floes of 100,000 in chips, folding floes by raising a river bet from 60,000 to 180,000 on a board of 5s-3d-2h-8c-6h. floes didn't have any desire to call or raise, folding instead.

1:10 am--Rising higher

Our blinds have gone up once again, to the rarefied air of 2,500/5,000. Think that'll be good enough to bust a few shorties?

1:08 am--For the love of icons

It's Funky Icon Night over on Table 8. We've got two scary babies and one TJ Cookier. Those babies are scary enough we're considering blocking the icons altogether. No way we'd block Cookier, though. He never gets old.

weirdicons.jpg

1:07 am--astarisborn uses pressure poker to take down pot

In no-limit and pot-limit poker, a player's stack is one of the many weapons at his disposal. astarisborn used it effectively on the turn of a raised pot with omalos. The board read 5h-Jc-Qd-3s. With 52,000 in the pot, omalos bet 42,000. astarisborn raised that bet to 184,000, bringing a uick fold from omalos and boosting astarisborn's stack to almost 300,000.

1:01 am--And then there were four

Four tables, that is. The pace of eliminations has slowed somewhat, but the short stacks continue to bust as they inevitably must. Thirty six players remain, spread evenly across four tables. The chip leader remains MiniKipDK, who has held the chip lead for the last ninety minutes. He currently has 621,168 in chips.

12:58 am--And just like that...

Moments after we posted about Stuart "thedonator" Patterson's woes, he found a hand worth going with. Unfortunately, he was in pretty bad shape when he got his chips in the middle, holding Js-Jc-Tc-3s against Riverloser's Ac-As-8s-2s. The Ah-7s-4s flop couldn't have been much worse for Patterson, and he bricked out to finish in 38th place, claiming a prize of $2,382.66.

12:54 am--Alms for the poor?

While his tablemate Shaun Deeb makes up some of the ground he lost earlier, Stuart Patterson has fallen on hard times. He's sitting on a stack of just 81,468 at this point, almost exactly one third of the average stack. The blinds are ready to eat him alive if he can't find a way back into this game soon.

12:50 am--rujobo suffers the kind of loss that leads to a fist through a monitor

A bit pot on Table 85 resulted in a big loss for rujobo. He called a raise to 12,000 made by NoraFlum before omalos reraised to 48,000. Everyone called to a three-way flop of 7h-Jh-3. Action checked to NoraFlum, who moved all in for 87,186. rujobo quickly raised all in himself to 348,117, folding omalos. rujobo showed top set of jacks aainst NoraFlum's bottom two pair and gutshot straight, 4d-3d-7d-5s. The turn Ts was a blank, but the river 6d filled NoraFlum's gutshot straight and sent 318,372 chips her way.

12:48 am--Deeb on the rise

Shaun Deeb had dropped toward the back of the pack in chips as of a few minutes ago after not playing many hands in the last level. Sitting still never got anyone to the top, and Deeb knows that - and he's jumped a little higher since then.

Deeb first came out of hiding to take down a 44k pot with some well-timed aggression - and he didn't even have to see a flop to do it. .dfm.dfm. opened for 9,999 in middle position, rujobo called from the cutoff, and Stuart Patterson called on the button. Deeb then raised to 53,995 - almost half his stack - and claimed the pot on the spot.

A few hands later, he took down a 62k pot with a bet of 38,500 on the river against .dfm.dfm. with the board reading Ks-Kc-9h-7d-Jh. With those two pots, he brought himself back up to just over 180,000.

12:42 am--JohnnyBax has twice the chips

It didn't take long for Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy to double up after the break. In yet another multi-way limped flop of 6h-8d-Qc, Josephy raised a bet made by IFiNishfish from 14,000 to 58,000. IFiNishfish reraised to 180,000, enough to put Josephy all in. Josephy tanked for about forty seconds before calling all in. He had flopped a set of sixes, Jh-3c-6s-6d and was in great shape against IFiNishfish's two pair, Kd-Qd-Td-8h.

The turn and river were both bricks. Josephy collected 278,564 chips from the pot and has some breathing room from blinds that were starting to get a bit high for the size of his stack.

12:34am--Another break is upon us

Level 19
Blinds 2,000 / 4,000
Average chip count: 228,439
Players remaining: 41
First prize: $144,112.50

Top ten players:

1. MiniKipDK 503,668
2. omalos 470,641
3. Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier 463,648
4. caprioli 422,538
5. ely_cash41 418,514
6. rujobo 404,116
7. floes 398,674
8. YRWTHMELTHR 386,426
9. TheNew 358,335
10. Jenka 321,172

12:24 am--Little orphan ElkY

Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier's running so well, even the orphaned pots wind up in his stack. Nobody bet a Qs-Jc-Kc flop in a five-way limped pot. On the turn 4d, ElkY bet 9,000 from the big blind and took down the pot.

He's been making poker look easy during this WCOOP, with deep runs in multiple events, including a runner-up finish in the High Roller heads-up event this past weekend. Of course, that's just an extension of the run he's been on since winning the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure to kick off the year. Watch him make it look easy against William Thorson during that tournament:


Watch PCA 2008 - 'ElkY' Grospellier vs Thorson on PokerStars.tv

12:16am--Team PokerStars Pro Dario Minieri eliminated

Oh, the brutality of PLO. Dario Minieri was sitting comfortably on about 142,000 in chips. Then, in the span of three hands, he was out in 44th place.

He lost a big chunk of his stack in a four-way limped pot that came down 8s-3c-6h. Minieri bet 11,111, which folded two of his opponents. The third, SCARFACE1, raised to 45,333. Minieri repopped it all in. SCARFACE1 only had 47,000 behind his initial raise. He shipped them all in. As it turned out, both players were on draws:

Minieri: Td-7c-5s-4d
SCARFACE1: Th-9d-8c-7s

SCARFACE1 was in the lead with a pair and a wrap draw, but Minieri had a partial wrap of his own. Neither player hit the Qc turn or the 3d river.

Losing that pot left Minieri with 47,000 chips. He shipped them all into the middle in another multi-way limped pot on a flop of Qd-5c-8s. He was called by astarisborn, who had flopped a set of fives. Minieri showed Ad-Qh-Ts-9s for top pair with a gutshot draw. He finished with three pair after a 9d turn and Ah river. He's out of the tournament.

Minieri's elimination means that ElkY is officially the last Team PokerStars Pro standing - again. He's had an incredible ride in this WCOOP, and he's not done yet.


12:11 am--Deeb, Donator holding steady

After working bigger stacks earlier, both Stuart "thedonator" Patterson (131k) and Shaun Deeb (130k) find themselves with stacks well below the 217k average. That's been enough to slow them both down; with no antes in PLO, they can afford to choose their spots carefully.

12:07 am--ElkY finally starts moving north again

Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier finally came up with a winner. If it takes a full house every time, he's probably in trouble, but for now his kings full of queens was enough to take down a three-way pot and chip up to about 430,000. Given how well ElkY has been playing during the WCOOP, it seems like it's only a matter of time before he starts turning it on again and accumulating chips.

12:05 am--Blinds go up

The blinds continue to climb as we move on to Level 18; they'll be at 1,500/3,000 for the next 30 minutes.

12:03 am--The calm before the storm?

It's been a quiet level for several of the well-known players still left in the field. Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier is holding steady in the high 300s; Dario Minieri has been unable to move above 150,000; and Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy hasn't made much progress either. He did take a small pot off of tyr55 to climb above 200,000 in chips. The two took a raised flop along with Pokerro of Ks-9c-Qd. tyr55 led out for 25,000 and found a caller in Josephy. On the turn 4c, tyr55 checked and then folded to Josephy's 77,500-chip bet, a bet that represented three-quarters of his stack.

12:00 am--It had to happen

We knew Stuart Patterson and Shaun Deeb would end up playing a pot sooner or later. Nobody lost their stack, but Deeb came out on top at a point where Patterson had been bleeding chips for a bit. Deeb's Ah-8s-7s-6c was good for the flush - and the 47,750 pot - on a board of As-8d-2c-Ks-Js, taking him to 141,452 and dropping Patterson to 136,018.

11:46pm--New meaning to the phrase "family pot"

Table 85 just had a nine-way limped pot. Every player at the table came in for the minimum, 2,500. You would think that with all those cards out, a flop of 8c-Qd-Js would create some fireworks. Instead, action checked to NoraFlum, who bet 22,500. She then watched as each of the other eight players folded in turn.

11:45 pm--Donations welcome

Stuart "thedonator" Patterson just grabbed himself a nice pot worth nearly 60k.

TravestyFund opened for 7,500 and Patterson was the only caller in the small blind. Both players checked all the way to the river, when the board read Kd-8s-6d-Td-6s. Patterson bet 6,600 and TravestyFund raised to 20,850. Patterson paused for a bit before raising to 62,500 - just shy of enough to put TravestyFund all-in. The pressure gave him pause, and eventually TravestyFund folded his hand. Patterson showed Ac-Kc-Ts-2d as he dragged the pot.

11:40pm--SCARFACE1 can't handle the pressure

SCARFACE1 has fallen a long way since he held the chip lead. He called a raise to 6,600 from tiffaniejoy. The players in the blinds, Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier and NoraFlum, also called. tiffaniejoy made a continuation bet of 26,400 on the Ah-Qs-8s flop, a bet that was only called by SCARFACE1. When the turn came 7c, tiffaniejoy made it 79,200 to go, which was almost all of what SCARFACE1 had left. He thought about his decision for roughly thirty seconds before folding.

11:37 pm--Musical tables

We tracked down Stuart "thedonator" Patterson after he moved to Table 8 - and once we found him, Shaun Deeb dropped in directly to his left. We won't be surprised if a confrontation breaks out between those two sometime in the near future.

11:30pm--Break time!

Level 17
Blinds 1,250 / 2,500
Average chip count: 167,250
Players remaining: 56
First prize: $144,112.50

Top ten players:

1. MiniKipDK 497,418
2. YRWTHMELTHR 477,422
3. rrujobo 410,116
4. Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier 408,998
5. TheNew 395,229
6. floes 393,125
7. caprioli 334,713
8. sappy123 263,353
9. MENTOR 2 253,190
10. kAmIkAdZeEe 247,110

Other remaining Team PokerStars Pros:

Dario "Dariominieri" Minieri 143,625 (30th)

11:26 pm--Deeb mounting a comeback

It looks like dropping that last big pot got under Shaun Deeb's skin. He's taken down three pots - worth 30k, 36k, and 39k - without a showdown to jump back up to 141,952.

11:23pm--JOE FRASER lands punch against Minieri

Dario Minieri picked the wrong time to raise with just top pair. His opponent, JOE FRASER, had flopped top set and pushed all in over the top of Minieri's raise. Given the small size of the all-in raise, Minieri was priced into a call. He did not improve. JOE FRASER doubled up to 127,000 in chips, while Minieri slipped to just about 110,000.

11:20 pm--Deeb takes a dive

Shaun Deeb opened for 6,000 and got calls from MENTOR2 in the hijack, TheTownhouse on the button, and TwistedEcho in the big blind. Deeb bet 19,500 on the Qd-9s-3s flop when the action checked to him, but MENTOR2 raised to 83,500. That cleared out the field, and Deeb reraised enough to move MENTOR2 all-in. He called and the two showed their hands:

Deeb: Qh-Th-9c-7d
MENTOR2: Ks-9d-9h-8c

Deeb caught no help and dropped to 80,952, while MENTOR2 jumped to 264,190.

11:11pm--Jenka takes out PlayaAAK8

It was a tough ending for PlayaAAK8. He made a preflop stand against Jenka, holding Ah-Kc-8h-6s. Jenka held two of those same cards, As-6h, but also held Ad-2h. He had PlayaAAK8 dominated. PlayaAAK8 flopped a heart draw, 3h-3d-4h, but that was where it ended for him. He bricked the turn Js and the river 2d to go out in 65th place. That finish earned him $1,998.36.

11:08pm--Memo to Table 85: Watch out, Minieri has chips again

Stuart "thedonator" Patterson and Dario Minieri haven't really locked horns much in the time that they've been seated togther at Table 85. But the law of averages dictated that at some point they would tango.

It was Patterson who opened the action preflop, with a raise to 5,000 that only Minieri called. Minieri was in the big blind and led out for pot, 11,000, on a flop of 2s-6h-Ts. Patterson called. The turn was the Td and brought a bet of 22,000 from Minieri. Again Patterson called. On the river Js, Minieri made his largest bet yet, 44,000 total. Patterson called a third time. Minieri turned over 8s-As-9s-8d. He flopped a flush draw and a gutshot draw and got there on the river.

A few hands later, the two were at it again, but the time Patterson was more aggressive. Patterson opened to 5,000 from under the gun and called Minieri's reraise to 18,000. The flop was ragged and small, coming 3c-7s-7d. Patterson checked, then raised Minieri from 24,000 to 56,000. That was enough to induce a fold and recover some of Patterson's chips.

11:03 pm--Say hello to my slightly larger friend

We have a new chipleader: ElkY.

kAmIkAdZeEe opened the action for 6,000 in middle position and got calls from floes in the cutoff, ElkY on the button, and SCARFACE1 in the small blind. The flop came down Th-7d-3c and action checked to ElkY, who bet pot for 26,000. SCARFACE1 check-raised to 104,000, clearing out the rest of the field and putting the decision back on ElkY.

ElkY considered his move and then shoved all-in for a total of 211,226. SCARFACE1 thought for a while before finally calling, showing 4s-4c-3s-3d for bottom set. ElkY had 7c-7h-6s-5h for middle set, which held up through the Jc turnand Js river.

ElkY now has 448,452, while SCARFACE1 has 120,518.

11:00 pm--The price of poker's going up

We're moving on up, and our players will be dealing with blinds of 1,000/2,000 for the next 30 minutes.

10:57pm--Action Dario replaced by Cautious Dario

Since losing that three-way all in with top set to Stuart Patterson and a Bull 67, Dario Minieri has dialed down his preflop raising frequency. He's managed to rebuild slightly to about 160,000 by playing a more "traditional" game. Stuart Patterson, on the other hand, seems to have opened up his game now that he finally has chips.

10:55 pm--What a monster

caprioli jumped into the Top 5 a few minutes ago with this hand:

10:50 pm--TwistedEcho drops a chunk

TwistedEcho had taken command of Table 74 earlier, but he lost a big chunk when he went to war with TheTownhouse on the turn with a board of Jd-4h-3d-9h. TheTownhouse got all-in for 76,642 holding Js-Jc-7c-5s, while TwistedEcho had Qh-Jh-Ts-6s. The river gave TheTownhouse a boat and doubled him up to 164,984. TwistedEcho, meanwhile, dropped to 227,590.

10:47pm--thedonator squeaks out on the river

For once, Dario Minieri didn't do the preflop raising on Table 85. This time it was Stuart "thedonator" Patterson who made it 4,400 to go. a Bull 67 called on the button, as did Minieri in the big blind.

A flop of 7d-Jc-8d brought more action than you can shake a stick at. Minieri checked to Patteron, who made it 12,600 to go. a Bull 67 raised to 28,800. Minieri then check-raised to 113,100, enough to put both of his opponents all in and they BOTH called.

Minieri: Jh-Js-7h-6h
Patterson: Ad-Qd-Th-3h
a Bull 67: Kd-4d-Tc-9c

Minieri flopped top set; a Bull 67 flopped a straight; and Patterson flopped a gutshot draw and the nut flush draw (of course, two of his out were in a Bull 67's hand). The turn blanked for everybody, 2c, but the river 3d made Patterson's nut flush. He got the main pot and tripled to almost 150,000; a Bull 67 got the side pot with his second-nut flush. Mineri was left wondering what he did to get left holding with top set and no share of the pot.

10:46 pm--Movin' on up

ElkY grabbed his most significant pot in quite a while just a few minutes ago. kAmIkAdZeEe opened for 5,400 in the cutoff and floes called in the small blind. ElkY then reraised to 21,600, getting the call only from floes. ElkY's pot-sized bet of 48,600 on the 8s-5s-2c flop was good enough to grab the pot.

Two hands later the Team PokerStars Pro grabbed another 16,200 pot to move over the 200k mark. It's a good thing ElkY is stocking up on ammo - he'll need it, being sandwiched between floes (311k) and SCARFACE1 (313k).

10:42 pm--ElkY chipping up

ElkY is climbing the leaderboard a little bit at a time. He isn't playing many pots, but he's generally winning those where he's committing chips. After taking a 35,100 pot away from neverwin on the turn a few moments ago he found himself in possession of a stack worth 162,626, a solid 40k above par.

10:41pm--Slowly but surely

There are now 76 players remaining, with an average stack of about 123,000 chips. At blinds of 900 and 1,800, that my seem like a lot (it's seventy big blinds after all) but this is pot-limit omaha -- the game where there are six ways to win and a thousand ways to lose. Seventy big blinds evaporate pretty quickly after missing a draw or two, and when don't you flop a draw in pot-limit omaha?

10:34 pm--thedonator can't stop Minieri

Things continue to run wrong for Stuart "thedonator" Patterson. He called from the small blind after Dario Minieri raised another pot to 4,700. On a flop of 7d-Jc-8h, action checked to Minieri, who fired out for 10,800. Patterson called, but had to fold on the turn 5c when Minieri made it 35,700. Those 15,000 chips represented almost a quarter of Patterson's stack. He's under 50,000 chips now.

10:31 pm--Clash of the titans

TwistedEcho and omalos just tangled in a hefty pot and omalos came out the worse for wear.

omalos opened for 4,600 in the cutoff and got calls form TwistedEcho on the button and shaundeeb in the big blind. shaundeeb and omalos checked the As-Js-8c flop and TwistedEcho bet 12,000. shaundeeb folded but omalos raised to 37,800. After some consideration, TwistedEcho reraised to a whopping 128,100. Apparently omalos didn't like his hand that much - he folded, leaving himself 175,590. TwistedEcho, meanwhile, is up to 282,632.

10:29 pm--How low can we go?

Despite the slow work of having to burst the bubble at the beginning, we eliminated 30 players over the course of the last level. Will we see another decimation of the field this hour? There's only one way to find out - stick with us!

10:23 pm--Break time again

Level 15
Blinds 900/1,800
Average chip count: 111,500
Players remaining: 84
First prize: $144,112.50

Top ten players:

1. TheNew 339,292
2. SCARFACE1 324,644
3. floes 318,402
4. sappy123 239,753
5. TwistedEcho 234,732
6. mlagoo 228,240
7. caprioli 227,624
8. kAmIkAdZeEe 225,077
9. omalos 217,990
10. Team PokerStars Pro Dario "Dariominieri" Minieri 207,257

Other remaining Team PokerStars Pros:

Betrand "ElkY" Grospellier 132,926 (27th)

10:21 pm--Making a little headway

ElkY has managed to gain a little ground in the last ten minutes, taking down two nice pots to jump up to over 143k. But as soon as he tried to open a pot, SCARFACE1 - who has moved over the 325k mark - reraised pot to make ElkY lay his hand down.

10:18pm--MarySmythe doubles through JohnnyBax

Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy took a chance with unimproved kings and paid the price. He raiesd to 4,800 before the flop and was reraised by Mary Smythe in the small blind. A raising war broke out after the flop came down 2d-9h-3c with MarySmythe calling all in for about 63,000 total. MarySmythe showed Ac-As-Js-Th and improved to a straight with Qd on the turn and 8s on the rvier. Josephy turned over a smaller pair, Kc-Kd-7h-Jc. He's fallen back to the pack with about 100,000 in chips.

10:15 pm--ElkY in a tough spot

Much like Stuart Patterson on Table 85, ElkY has been biding his time on Table 31. Most of the action is being driven by big stack SCARFACE1 (291,044) - and he's sitting directly to ElkY's left. Luckily for the Team PokerStars Pro, a stack of 118,426 is pretty healthy at this point.

10:11pm--Slow going for thedonator

Stuart "thedonator" Patterson is sitting directly across from Dario Miniei on Table 85. Like the rest of us, he's been watching Minieri run all over the table. Unfortunately for Patterson, he hasn't been doing the same. He has managed to hold onto the chips he has but will need to start chipping up soon if he wants to go deep in this event.

10:10 pm--Table of death?

Table 74, the old abode of Chris Moneymaker, is one candidate for the Table of Death moniker right now. Three of the top 10 chip stacks - TwistedEcho (237,132), omalos (221,990), and shaundeeb (227,061) are all seated there - and they're three out of four players in a row, too.

10:02 pm--Josephy's turn to drop chips

It was a limped pot between the small blind, Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy, and the big blind, Daethebest. Joseph led out for 3,200 after the flop came Jh-2h-8c, and bet 6,400 on the 5s turn. Davethebest raised pot to 25,600 after the turn bet, a raise that Josephy called.

It's tough to say what Josephy was looking for on the river. We do know that it came down Ac, and that he folded after Davethebest bet 33,600.

10:00 pm--Moving quickly

Since the bubble burst, we've been losing players at a rate of about one a minute. Only 90 remain in the field as we work our way toward the next pay jump, which will come at 72nd place.

9:57pm--Tough flop for Minieri

Dario Minieri, as he has been doing almost every hand for the last half hour, raised preflop to 3,500. He was called in five spots -- the table, it seemed, was sick of letting him run the show. The flop came 6s-3c-Jd. The big blind, akat11, led into Minieri for 21,000. Minieri quickly raised to 84,000, folding everyone else. akat11 only had 14,666 behind his original bet, chips which quickly found their way into the middle.

Minieri: 6h-3h-7d-5h
akat11: 3d-2s-3s-Jh

It was bottom two pair and a gutshot draw for Minieri against bottom set for akat11. Neither player improved by the river. akat11 was the winner, taking a small chunk out of Minieri's stack -- basically all the chips he had accumulated by repeatedly raising during the last half hour.

9:54 pm--Just two left

With Chris Moneymaker's departure a few minutes ago, Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier and Dario Minieri are the last Team PokerStars Pros standing. They're both in pretty good shape at the moment, sitting in the top 25, but anything can happen in an action game like PLO.

9:48 pm--Money made

After the bubble burst, Chris Moneymaker ended up finding his way to the rail at the hands of omalos.

shaundeeb opened for 4,200 under the gun, getting calls from Moneymaker in the hijack and omalos on the button. shaundeeb checked the Jc-7h-5h flop, and Moneymaker led out for 11,200. omalos called and shaundeeb folded, bringing the Ts on the turn. Moneymaker then bet pot (37,100), calling all-in when omalos made the raise.

Moneymaker: Ks-Kh-4h-4c
omalos: Ac-Th-9s-8s

omalos' straight held up on the Ad river and sent Moneymaker home in 105th place, earning him $1,921.50.

9:43pm--Poor Masentaja

There are few things more frustrating than playing a poker tournament for seven hour and then going out on the money bubble. That was Masentaja's fate tonight. He went out in 109th place, the last elimination before the money. All of the remaining players in the field will cash in this event for at least $1,921.50.

9:42 pm--Under pressure

Chris Moneymaker is down to 84,372 after folding to a pressure bet from shaundeeb. With 27,300 on the middle and a board reading Qh-3s-2c-8s, shaundeeb checked and Moneymaker bet 21,000. shaundeeb then check-raised the pot, 90,300. Moneymaker didn't want to go out on the bubble and folded, shipping the 69,300 pot to shaundeeb.

9:40pm--Some players wish the bubble would go forever

Dario Minieri and Cliff "JohnnyBax" Josephy have been pounding their respective tables. Each is the biggest stack at the table and each has raised three out of every four hands so we came back from the fifteen-minute break. Once the money bubble bursts, we expect that they will dial it down a notch, but for now they're chipping up one-and-a-half big blinds at a time.

9:36 pm--Inching closer

It's official - we're on the bubble now, thanks to the eliminations of tunafish919 (110th), jcamby33 (111th), and genoa_st (112th). After our next elimination we'll be in the money. Since we're playing PLO the next bustout could come quickly, but then again...

9:30 pm--ElkY takes one

ElkY just took down a healthy 91,400 pot to give himself some more ammunition and drop his opponent into trouble territory.

The Team PokerStars Pro opened for 4,200 in second position and only bokkie87 called from the small blind. The flop came 9c-7d-3c and bokkie87 led out for 9,800. ElkY called to see the turn come the 2d. Again bokkie87 led out (for 7,000), and again ElkY called. On the river bokkie87 led out again, for 24,000, but he folded when ElkY moved all-in.

That pot boosted ElkY to 144,226 and dropped bokkie87 to 35,477.

9:27pm--Good things come in threes?

JohnnyBax and Dario Minieri have both come back from the fifteen-minute break and won the three pots in rapid succession at their respective tables. Bax had no callers for any of his preflop raises; Minieri was called by Gambling Pays the third time he made a preflop raise, to 4,900. Minieri checked the 8h-3d-Ah flop to GamblingPays, then called a bet of 6,500. Both players checked the 7d turn and the Td river. Minieri's pair of aces, Ac-Qd-Jc-2h, was the winning hand.

Bax and Minieri are both in the top twenty in chips.

9:24 pm--And we're back!

It's official - we're back underway after the 15-minute break. Things will be tense for a bit as we look to burst this bubble and get to the business of paying people.

9:13pm--Chip counts at the sixth break

Level 13
Blinds 700/1,400
Average chip count: 82,157
Players remaining: 114
First prize: $144,112.50

Top ten players:

1. SCARFACE1 261,544
2. shaundeeb 214,824
3. ely_cash41 213,068
4. sappy123 203,453
5. .dfm.dfm. 200,800
6. floes 196,830
7. mlagoo 192,792
8. the new 188,216
9. JohnnyBax 182,010
10. Pokerro 170,748

Team PokerStars pros in top 100:

Dario Minieri 129,157 (20th place)
Chris "Money800" Moneymaker 121,372 (25th)
Betrand "ElkY" Grospellier 96,426 (42nd)

9.02pm -- The rise and rise of shaundeeb

A quick glance through the hand histories and the big ones will always stand out. 70,000 here, 80,000 there. But shaundeeb doesn't seem to have been in any of them, despite the fact that he now has more than 210,000.

The biggest was a pot worth 37,500, which played out like this...

8.57pm -- State of play as we approach the bubble

With 118 players left we are now only 10 eliminations from the money. Players surviving that far are guaranteed $1,921.50.

8:52pm - Moneymaker not so 200K anymore

We will now have to call him the 132K man. Chris Moneymaker hasn't fared well in recent hands, dropping a fairly large one to Twisted Echo when he made a king high flush on the river. Although Money800 has lost about 70,000 chips since his peak, he is still in the top 20 and has a stack is nearly double average.


Watch Chris Moneymaker Masterclass on PokerStars.tv

8:37pm - FossilMan's luck is rubbing off on Minieri

Near the top ten at the break, Team PokerStars Pro Dario Minieri hasn't fared well this hour. He lost about 30K in a pot holding two queens in the hole up against an all-in player with aces. Since then other players have chipped away at his stack, reducing it to its current state of about 54K. Minieri is now ranked 79th.

8.28pm -- Don't stop deeb now

What was I saying about shaundeeb? Now up to 134K...

8:21pm -- Raymer fossilized

Boy did it look good for Raymer earlier, but since the last break he kept losing chips in pots where he folded before the river.

Finally down to 28,802 he got all of his chips into the pot pre-flop against Plyzhne and couldn't have like this:

Raymer: Qd-Qs-7c-2s
Plyzhne: Ah-Ac-5d-6c

The board ran out Ad-3c-8d-Qh-2c for the final nail in the coffin. Raymer finished 150th while Plyzhne was up to 110,582.


Watch Greg Raymer On The WCOOP on PokerStars.tv

8:15pm - Chris Moneymaker -- the 200K man

Money800 is now out in front thanks to a heck of a flop against PieOhMy. The two got all of PieOhMy's 75,000 chips in the middle after a flop of Qh-8d-2h. Not only did Moneymaker hold top set with Qc-Qs-5c-8s, but he also cut off the quad chances of PieOhMy who held 10d-8h-8c-7c. The best PieOhMy could hope for was runner-runner nine and jack for a miracle straight,

That didn't happen and Moneymaker now leads all challengers with 206,082

8:10pm - Eliminations slowing

Since bust outs came so quickly early, the remaining players have a lot of play in their stacks. With average stacks at more than 57,000 and blinds at 500/1,000 knockouts are coming much more slowly.

8:08pm--Chip counts at the fifth break

Level 11
Blinds 500/1,000
Average chip count: 57,460
Players remaining: 163
First prize: $144,112.50

Top ten players:

1. Team PS Pro Chris "Money800" Moneymaker 149,391
2. StanDman 145,132
3. justjoo 137,924
4. SCARFCE1 132,970
5. Zanjong 126,449
6. mlagoo 124,201
7. Andy McLEOD 119,542
8. CPT CRUX 117,628
9. JohnnyBax 115,720
10. MENTOR 2 115,398

Other Team PokerStars pros in top 100:

Dario Minieri 103,414 (15th place)
Greg "FossilMan" Raymer 84,502 (37th)
Betrand "ElkY" Grospellier 60,785 (68th)

7.50pm -- No stopping deeb

Shaundeeb is starting to piece together a campaign of sorts in level ten, with blinds of 400/800. A level ago he was hovering in the mid-forties but now is plotting a course to six figures.

First, from middle position, a pre-flop raise to 2,400 finding two callers in ChetDiMay on the button and
amichaiKK on the big blind. To the flop!

5s-4h-Td

amichaiKK checks to shaundeeb who immediately bets, 6,600 in all which ChetDiMay calls. For amichaiKK though it's too much.

The turn comes a 6d prompting both players to check. The river, a 7h and again both check. Deeb shows 8s-9c-Qc-Qh for a ten high straight, whilst chetDiMay can do nothing but muck, waving off a 21K pot.

Then came another. In the big blind now, Deeb called the under-the-gun bet by plo8 to 2,200, not before ChetDiMay, Money800 and Andy McLEOD had done the same. The flop came 9s-3c-5c. All five players checked.

The turn, the Kc, injected some life into things again, but only a little and it was in Deeb's favour. McLEOD checked to Deeb who bet 9,200, and like the brakes had been slammed on it was enough to take the pot. 32K in two pots. Deeb currently has 91K.

No stranger to high rolling, shaundeeb spoke to the video blog team at the APPT Macau...


Watch APPT Macau 08: Shaun Deeb on PokerStars.tv

7:40pm - World champs on the move

Chris Moneymaker is up to 152K by using his nice stack in an aggressive manner while Greg Raymer is doing the same to chip up to 111K.

7:20pm - The 200 Club

We're now down to less than 200 players. Recent bustouts include Team PokerStars pros Luca Pagano in 287th and Humberto Brenes in 232nd. BigRiskky went out in 249th.

7.10pm -- A big hand for Humberto

There I was talking about Humberto Brenes and I think I may have bokked him. From more than 40K to bust out for the Godfather a few minutes ago, thanks to these two hands that turned his tournament upside down...

7:05pm - World champion mutual admiration society

The 2003 and 2004 WSOP Main Event champs are keeping tabs on each other in this event. After Greg Raymer just won his big pot, Chris Moneymaker stopped by to leave a comment...

Money800 [Commentator]: nice job greg keep it up

FossilMan: ty Chris, you too last time I looked

7:03pm--Chip counts at the fourth break

Level 9
Blinds 300/600
Average chip count: 40,025
Players remaining: 234
First prize: $144,112.50

Top ten players:

1. Andy McLEOD 183,137
2. Miraclos 137,838
3. Zanjong 136,964
4. Team PS Pro Chris "Money800" Moneymaker 118,422
5. StanDman 105,037
6. Joseba 103,414
7. genoa_st 103,076
8. CPT CRUX 100,380
9. thedonator 93,638
10. JP 5-time 90,498

Other Team PokerStars pros in top 100:

Dario Minieri 90,014 (11th place)
Greg "FossilMan" Raymer 86,468 (13th)
Betrand "ElkY" Grospellier 69,227 (29th)
Humberto "Humberto B." Brenes 41,248 (94th)

Currently in 11th place, Dario Minieri had a pretty good summer by most people's standards, as this video blog recaps...


Watch WSOP: Dario Minieri Interview on PokerStars.tv

7pm -- Seeing is believing

Don't forget you can find all the latest on the WCOOP, including interviews and highlights on PokerStars.tv. You'll also find all you can wish for when it comes form EPT, APPT and LAPT snippets. Well worth a look. Allow plenty of time.

6.55pm -- Team PokerStars Pros tangle in 38K pot

ElkY may be pouncing into the lead but his table and team mate Humberto Brenes seems in no mood to let all this slip by without his own little slice of the action. With a little more than 17,000 and blinds still at 200/400 Humberto raised to 800 pre-flop from early position. He gets five callers along the way, among them ElkY in the big blind.

They see the flop of 2d-6c-Kd. It's checked by Jorj95 and ElkY before another 4,000 is fired out by Brenes forcing out all but ElkY. It would now be solely a Team PokerStars matter, a serious one too as ElkY re-raised to 16,800 in total. Humberto pressed the appropriate key and calls all-in.

The turn, a 5s. The river, a Js. ElkY managed a pair of fives, showing 4d-Ad-5c-8s, whilst Brenes wins with a set of kings, turning over Kh-Jh-Ks-7c, a hand good for 37,848.

ElkY: nh humberto
Humberto B.: ty
Humberto B.: =)

6:50pm - His admiration, if not the pot

Greg "Fossilman" Raymer just won a big one in what is shaping up to be a banner day for PS pros (now 3 of them in the top 12).

With 44,634 in his stack, Raymer raised to 1K pre-flop and JP OSU -- sitting with 68,009 -- three bet to 3,600. Raymer responded with another raise to 11,400 and JP OSU just called.
The flop was Jc-5c-Qd and Raymer checked. JP OSU bet out 23,400 and Raymer pushed all-in for another 9K over the top.

The hands were:

Raymer: Ah-Ad-5d-6s
JP OSU: Kc-Kd-Qs-Js

The turn was the sweet Ac for Raymer, turning the tables, and the river was a safe 2h. Raymer moved up to 89,868 after the hand which sparked this exchange between the two players:
FossilMan: wow, so sure you had KK, didn't think I was behind on flop; tough beat

JP OSU: happens

FossilMan: I admire your attitude sir

6:38pm - Moneymaker on the move

Money800 just won a 60K pot, taking most of sqmpork's chips when he made a full house -- deuces full of kings -- against the flush draw of sqmpork. Chris Moneymaker now has about 94K in chips, putting him back in the top 10.

6.35pm - ElkY in hunt for chips

Another handsome pot for Team PokerStars Pro ElkY with blinds now at the level eight stage of 200/400.

ElkY called a Hoppeko raise from middle position, so too did Jorj95, 1,800 in all. The three of them saw a flop of 4d-5s-5h. Jorj95 and ElkY both checked, leaving it to Hoppeko to bet, and bet big. 6,400 in total which forced Jorj95 out of the hand. ElkY though stood fast, re-raising to a persuasive 26,400. Hoppeko chose against it and folded his hand. Team Pro ElkY now up to more than 80,000 and ninth place, one step behind Dario Minieri.

6:33pm - Dario's wizardry

Team PokerStars Pro Dario Minieri just jumped into the top 10 by winning a big pot for all of his chips. He went in behind and came out like roses on a cooler flop. Here is how it happened:

20050514-_MG_1676.jpg
Super Dario starting to fly

6:24pm - Less than 300 left in this thing

Players are dropping like a mobster in cement shoes. Team PokerStars pros who have departed include Raymond Rahme in 338th, Hevad "RaiNKhAN" Khan in 320th and Tom McEvoy in 314th. Other notable knockouts include BeLOWaBOVe in 378th, PearlJammer in 371th and westmenloAA in 343th.

6:20pm - The metagame: Teasing the railbirds

Chris Moneymaker has its usual share of railbirds today. Recently during a big hand he still had time to cut up with an inquisitive railbird.

QUAK QUACK [observer]: how good do u think u r chris at poker between 1 and 10.b honest
Money800: 12
QUAK QUACK [observer]: c u can't read
QUAK QUACK [observer]: i sais 1to 10
QUAK QUACK [observer]: to much luck involed to say that chris
Money800: ok fine
Money800: 14
Moneymaker now has 59K.

6.15pm - ElkY sparks into life to boost his stack

Team PokerStars Pro Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier just added close to 14K in two hands first by virtue of an ace high flush and then by betting big on the flop turn and river to win a pot uncontested, taking his stack to nearly 35,000.

20050604-_MG_3533.jpg

6.05pm -- Chen settles bill and heads for the rail

Bill Chen had been nursing a short stack for a while before this hand which sent the Team PokerStars Pro to the rail...

20050604-_MG_3416.jpg
Team PokerStars Pro Bill Chen -- eliminated

5.58pm -- Some things remain the same

Humberto Brenes and ElkY started today on the same table and they're still on the same table and doing well for it. Both players have a few hundred shy of 30K, which into level seven is above average.

5:51pm--Chip counts at the third break

Level 7
Blinds 150/300
Average chip count: 26,991
Players remaining: 347
First prize: $144,112.50

Top ten players:
1. Joseba 113,854
2. Zanjong 100,694
3. StanDman 100,380
4. 4Give Me Pls 92,080
5. MikemcDermou 80,237
6. Sembach81 78,702
7. Davethebest 71,646
8. Stavros 69,150
9. Hoppeko 67,688
10. a Bull 67 64,800

Team PokerStars pros in top 100:
Chris "Money800" Moneymaker 63,124 (16th place)
Greg "FossilMan" Raymer 41,535 (65th)

5:43pm -- Moneymaking on a Wednesday afternoon

Chris "Money800" Moneymaker has moved up to just under 64K after putting scarface_79 all-in on a flop of Jc-2h-7s.

Moneymaker had flopped two pair with his Jh-Qs-7h-8d and was ahead of the Ad-Ah-10s-5c of scarface_79. The turn and river came 6h-8h to improve Moneymaker's hand to a flush and he is now in the top 20 in chips again.

5.40pm - Bad timing for Timex

A blow for Timex McDonald, his stack cut in half.

5:33pm - Less than 400 ducks still on the pond

The bust-outs are coming quick now. Among those recently eliminated were gank in 454th, Boosted J in 410th and Team PokerStars Pro Lee Nelson in 396th.

5.30pm - Big pot keeps Khan content

Into level six with blinds at 100/200 and another big hand for Hevad "RaiNKhaN" Khan. Khan, in the big blind calls a bet by dagunman. The flop, with five takers, falls 5s-9c-7s. It's checked to twin-caracas who makes it 2,000 to play. Khan, next to act, re-raises another 6,700 making it 8,700 total. Whilst everyone else bugs out twin-caracas stays put, re-raising, making it a further 6,700 to 15,400. Khan calls for his last 3,900, putting himself all-in.

The turn card comes Ks, the river 4h. The showdown proves good for the Team PokerStars Pro, a set of fives with a hand of 5h-Jc-Ac-5d. Twin-caracas showed two pair, nines and sevens, holding Tc-9h-7c-8h. A pot of close to 30K for Khan.

5:25pm - FossilMan = Superman?

The conversation turns interesting on Greg Raymer's table.

_MG_1626_Neil Stoddart-2.jpg

Powerman34: fosil is bot all !

FossilMan: ?

Powerman34: ita a men not more !

Rich_Fish: i think in english = "you are superhuman"

FossilMan: in that case, thanks

5:16pm - Sure, but only if you are truly sorry

We have our first 100K player and his screename is 4Give Me Pls. He has 100,905 to top the leaderboard.

5.15pm - Timex back to average-ish

With blinds at 75/150 table six finds a certain Timex adding to his stack. Timex, or Mike McDonald as he's known in the real world, is an EPT winner, taking honours in Dortmund in season four. He just took a pot to keep him around the 20K mark...

20080202-_MG_6949.jpg
Mike "Timex" McDonald

5:03pm - 500 is in the rear view mirror

In fact, we are now down to almost 450 players. Team PokerStars pros eliminated include Andre "aakkari" Akkari in 535th, Alexandre "Alingomes" Gomes in 495th and John Duthie in 484th.
Other notables out include shaniac in 561st, Roothlus in 486th and Sowerss in 485th.

4:50pm - Raymer rambling

You may have noticed in the last chip counts that FossilMan had moved up the charts.

He got involved in a big hand with steamraise. Picking it up on the turn when Raymer had 25,435 in his stack and steamraise had 24,240, Raymer checked with 5c-Qd-Jd-3h on th board and steamraise bet 4,450. The 2004 WSOP champ then check-raised to 17,800 and steamraise called.

The 4c hit the river and Raymer put steamraise all-in for 6,500. steamraise folded and Raymer claimed a big one that vaulted him into 13th place.

4:44pm--Chip counts at the second break

Level 5
Blinds 75/150
Average chip count: 18,620
Players remaining: 503
First prize: $144,112.50

Top ten players:
1. Stavros 81,550
2. Zanjong 75.095
3. 4Give Me Pls 69,980
4. justjoo 65,390
5. Davethebeast 60,738
6. fouruhaters 58,425
7. kiiski 56,545
8. Team PS Pro Chris "Money800" Moneymaker 54,181
9. javel 53,352
10. Andy McLEOD 52,630

Other Team PokerStars pros in top 100:

Greg "FossilMan" Raymer 47,485 (19th)
Steve "stevejpa" Paul-Ambrose 31,110 (70th)
Humberto "Humberto B." Brenes 30,010 (77th)

4:36pm - Moneymaker not making money (nor losing any either)

Our one time chipleader Chris "Money800" Moneymaker hasn't been very active in the last level.

He dropped down into the mid 40,000s halfway through the second hours, but just took down a pot uncontested to move back up to 54,181.

4:30pm - More WCOOP action

Don't forget the second event of the day -- $320 NLHE 6-max -- is now starting. The event has a guaranteed prize pool of $500,000, but with nearly 3,000 players already signed up it will exceed that.

4.24pm - Akkari flushed out in level 4

Into level 4, with blinds at 50/100, Andre Akkari's tournament has come to a premature end. Fresh off a deep run at the EPT Barcelona Akkari was unable to match that performance in the virtual world, showing a set of sevens on the flop which ultimately was not good enough to beat the king-high flush of rivercrime. The victor now sits with more than 45K. Akkari out.

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Team PokerStars Pro Andre Akkari -- OUT

4.15pm -- The power of Player of the Year Pagano

Whilst William Thorson joins the growing list of eliminations, out in 557 th place, fellow Tema Pro Luca Pagano, who proudly collected the award for EPT Player of the Year at the inaugural EPT Awards in Barcelona last week, is still buzzing along thanks in part to a big pot that has his stack measuring more than 24K high.

4:03pm - Less than 600 player remain

Among the eliminations are Team PokerStars pros Katja Thater in 630th and Gavin Griffin in 607th.

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Team PokerStars Pro Gavin Griffin -- OUT in 607th

3.45pm -- The important stuff

748 players was the final count and 108 of them will be paid for their efforts today, with the payouts as follows...

1st $144,112.50
2nd $103,761
3rd $76,860
4th $57,645
5th $40,351.50
6th $32,665.50
7th $24,979.50
8th $17,293.50
9th $10,837.26

10th to 12th $8,070.30
13th to 15th $6,533.10
16th to 18th $4,995.90
19th to 27th $3,458.70
28th to 36th $2,690.10
37th to 45th $2,382.66
46th to 54th $2,152.08
55th to 72nd $1,998.36
73rd to 108th $1,921.50

3:39pm--Chip counts at the first break
Level 3
Blinds 40/80
Average chip count: 14,726
Players remaining: 637
First prize: $144,112.50

Top ten
1. Team PS Pro Chris "Money800" Moneymaker 53,506
2. Andy McLEOD 50,805
3. 4Give Me Pls 50,650
4. Stavros 49,240
5. gunning4you 41,509
6. HarrisMP 41,000
7. dazzy2004 39,973
8. nedoven_dk 38,790
9. muchbetter 38,384
10. Soseba 38,020

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Chip leader Chris Moneymaker

Other Team PokerStars pros in top 100:
Dario Minieri 32,434 (22nd place)
Steve "stevejpa" Paul-Ambrose 28,660 (34th)
Greg "FossilMan" Raymer 27,690 (39th)
Humberto "Humberto B." Brenes 21,460 (88th)

Eliminations
ChadBrown PRO (668th)
Alex Kravchenko (tied 691st)
Victor Ramdin (tied 691st)
Vanessa "LadyMaverick" Rousso (696th)

3.29pm - Hevad waits for no-one

A re-buy and a few hands later and RaiNKhaN is back in the game. It didn't take long...

3:28pm - Moneymaker is our chip leader

Chris Moneymaker just flopped top set again and managed to fade two big draws on the flop to win another huge pot. After this hand he was up to nearly 59K in chips:

3:21pm - Money800? How about Money36,096?

Team PokerStars Pro Chris "Money800" Moneymaker has vaulted into second place on the leaderboard with 36,096.

He got involved in a strange pot in which he and several others limped for 60, THE__D__RY made it 120 from the big blind, Moneymaker made it 600 from UTG and notable BigRiskky popped it to 2,100 just to the left of Moneymaker.

Everyone folded except Moneymaker and the flop came Tc-2s-Jc. Moneymaker checked and BigRiskky bet 4,500. Moneymaker then put him all-in for BigRiskky's last 2,900.

Moneymaker had flopped top set holding Jh-Jd-Qd-Ts while BigRiskky was way behind with Ks-Kd-4d-7h, The turn and river brought no king and Money800 won the nearly 25K pot.

3.14pm - RaiNKhaN in the mix

Hevad "RaiNKhaN" Khan shares a table with Brazilian Team PokerStars Pro Alex Gomes as well as shaniac and rivercrime, the latter responsible for a Khan re-buy a short while ago.

The action is folded to RaiNKhaN who makes it 180. It's called by shaniac, bennyboxare and Allingomes in the cut off but then raised by rivercrime in the small blind. All three others call though and they see the flop. 8h-2dJs.

First to act, rivercrime wastes no time, making it 5,760. RainKahn calls with what he has left, short of the original raise but amounting to 5,205. Shaniac folds, as does Gomes. It's just the two of them.

The turn and river come 8c-4s. The players turn over their cards...

Rivercrime: 7c-Ac-As-Ks for two pair, aces and eights.
RaiNKhaN: 9s-Ts-9c-Jh for a lesser two pair of jacks and eights.

A pot worth more than 16,000 wings its way to rivercrime, now up to more than 21,000. A re-buy for the Team PokerStars Pro RaiNKhaN.

3:06pm - Raymer wastes no time at new table

Immediately after being moved to another table Raymer won another big one. After the flop came 4c-4s-5s he put steamraise all-in.

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Greg "Fossilman" Raymer at the EPT Barcelona last week

Raymer held As-Ah-Ks-4d for trips and the nut flush draw and had steamraise in bad shape with Qs-8s-6h-3h for an inferior flush draw and open-ended straight draw.

The turn and river came Td-4h to give Fossilman quads and he was up to 25,720 after the hand.

3:02pm - Big hand for Raymer

Starting the hand with 7,370, Raymer limped with several others to see a flop of Qd-8h-3d. bigegypt opened for 320, Jin_ raised to 1,460 and Raymer called. The turn brought the 2h and Raymer led out for 2,800. Jin_ pushed all-in for 5K and Raymer called.

The hands:

Raymer: Ad-Td-9c-8c
Jin_ Ks-Jc-Qh-8s

The river brought the Jd, giving Raymer the nut flush and the 14,520 pot.

2.55pm -- Humberto B. out, and then in

A couple of brutal hands for Team PokerStars Pro Humberto Brenes. The Godfather of Costa Rican Poker took a re-buy early on but suffered in quick succession 20 minutes in.

Alex987 had raised to 80, called by Brenes and Jorj95. The flop came 9s-Jh-8s which was checked to Brenes who made it 260 which this time only Jorj95 called. On to the turn card, Ac. Brenes made it 780 this time a few flashes before Jorj95 re-raised to 1,880 and putting himself all-in. Brenes called to see the river card 6c.

Jorj95 showed Jd-6h-Qc-Jc at the showdown for a set of jacks whilst Brenes could only make two pairs, aces and nines, tabling 9c-Qd-6d-As. A pot of 4,540 costing Brenes dearly, but not as much as the next hand... Time for a re-buy.


2:47pm - No more, thanks

Team PokerStars Pro Vanessa "LadyMaverick" Rousso did not add on initially and was playing with a $3,000 stack when she got it all-in on the flop holding aces and no redraws. She declined to re-buy after the hand and exited in 696th place...



2:43pm - Fossilman shakes off the dust

Team PokerStars Pro Greg "Fossilman" Raymer is off to a good start. After taking his re-buy for the $6,000 double stack he proceeded to win a couple of quick pots, including a 1,200 one where he flopped top set with 8s.

He is up to $7,600 in the early going.

2.35pm -- A few interesting duels at the start

A few tables have flung Team PokerStars Pros together. Hevad "RaiNKhaN" Khan and Alex "Allingomes" Gomes share a table, as do ElkY and Humberto "Humberto.B" Brenes. Ray Rahme and Alex Kravchenko do likewise.

A few pieces of admin as we start. Re-buys are available to players until the first break although stacks must drop below the 3,000 they start with. An additional add-on is available at the break for a further 6,000 chips. Should make it interesting.


2.30pm -- PLO about to begin

Here we go with event 25 of the WCOOP and this time the game is pot limit Omaha with re-buys. Play is about to starts with so far nearly 600 players having paid the $320 for a seat. No surprise when something in excess of $500,000 is up for grabs.

As you'd expect you'll find a whole fleet of big name pros in the field, among them a good number of Team PokerStars Pros too numerous to list here. But they do include the likes of Chad "ChadBrownPRO" Brown, ElkY, Greg "Fossilman" Raymer, Gavin Griffin, Vanessa "LadyMaverick" Rousso, recent EPT Player of the Year Luca Pagano and Chris "Money800" Moneymaker. That's just the start of it.

So sit back, or forward, depending on who you might be railing. Let this re-buy mayhem begin...

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in WCOOP